2022 Grand Wagoneer
The Jeep lineup has grown in the last year with the addition of the Wagoneer and the new flagship model, the Grand Wagoneer. For years, it was the only automaker not to offer a full-size SUV to compete with the other Detroit giants. Now, the question is how the Grand Wagoneer stacks against the well-established competitors. Our test vehicle has an MSRP of $132,775 and is built at the Warren, MI, plant.
The Grand Wagoneer was eagerly awaited by longtime Jeep fans when Jeep presented the concept vehicle in 2020. The first thing that stands out when you get close to the Grand Wagoneer is the lack of Jeep logos. The famed seven-band grille in front is the only visual tie to the rest of the lineup. Instead of the Jeep badge on the hood, the letters Wagoneer are spelled out on the grille. Even the wheels read Wagoneer instead of Jeep. The intent here is to differentiate, to elevate the Wagoneer and Grand Wagoneer as the flagship models of the Stellantis family. The SUV reference will be Jeep, but the luxury standard would be Wagoneer, and this carries over the interior, as we will find out in a moment.
Design-wise, we find the Grand Wagoneer to be a huge success. The designers did an excellent job elevating the Jeep look. The front grille is big and wide and, yet, understated. The 22-inch painted wheels complete the look of the black roof and grey doors and side panels. In the back, no signs of any Jeep logos. Only Grand Wagoneer spelled over the license plate and the badging for the Quadratrac and the trim level.
The interior is where the Grand Wagoneer shines. The quality of the materials is up there with the best in class, and everywhere you look, there isn't almost a single piece that doesn't feel premium. The moment you open the door, the stitched leather and wood set the tone, inching closer to the German automakers' best offerings. The seats are comfortable and offer many adjustments on both sides. They are heated, ventilated and massaged, thus giving you the best experience possible. You'll find the control buttons on the side of the screen, but they aren't hard buttons; this was a little bit disappointing because it's better to incorporate them in the row of climate controls between the two seats. That being said, the seats offer great support and are excellent for family road trips. The same is true for the second row, the third row is best suited for children and teenagers due to the higher floor, but you won't face any problems installing a car seat. The ISOFIX ports are clearly marked, and the rear anchor is also quite accessible. Jeep's designers made sure everyone had an unobstructed view of the outside. Rear occupants have large windows on both sides and a third sunroof panel that allows everyone to enjoy the view. Another proof that third-row occupants weren't an afterthought is that each side has a USB and USB-C port, a cupholder and a button to adjust the seat back. When using the third row, the cargo room will be severely limited. If you need more space, you'll have to wait for the long-wheelbase Grand Wagoneer L, which will be available soon in dealerships. For example, you can still use it for groceries or a long journey with three children.
Moving on to the technology aspect, the Grand Wagoneer is loaded with features and screens. It has seven screens: four in front and three in the back. Let's start with the obvious one; the center screen is a 12-inch touchscreen with the new Uconnect 5 that is faster, wireless Apple Carplay and Android Auto. It can connect two phones simultaneously; parents can answer their calls on Bluetooth. The climate controls are also on this screen; fortunately, the full-size SUV keeps physical buttons to change the temperature and airflow quickly. Underneath them is a smaller 10.25-inch touchscreen. You can adjust the front and back climate controls, the massaging seats, and the bolstering of each seat in front. You can retract the screen; this is where the wireless charger is hidden alongside all kinds of chargers and an HDMI port for the passenger side 10.25-inch touchscreen. You can connect your Bluetooth headphones, so it doesn't stop the driver's music, and the passenger can seamlessly watch any movies of their liking. Both 10.1-inch screens can be paired with headphones. They have Amazon Fire TV integrated, giving access to your favourite app for entertainment and even downloading games. You can manage the screens with a remote, and the front passenger has access to intervene if a situation arises. Lastly, the 10.25-inch touchscreen controls the rear temperature and the heated/ventilated seats in the second row. The technology is also present in front of the driver; there is a 12.3-inch digital cluster where you can get information like the trip info, a full-size map screen or a night vision screen for driving in a pitch black area, for example. You can see, in smaller icons, the speed limit sign and the level of the suspension, both essential symbols. It's one of the best digital clusters in the industry; it will be part of Jeep's strategy in other premium models in different models. The McIntosh 23-speakers sound system, complete with a subwoofer, is also great, but we wish the music would be a little louder. Even at maximum volume, it isn't enough to get the party started. Long story short, the technology in the new Grand Wagoneer is up to par with its price tag.
Now getting to the driving experience. A 6.4L 8-cylinder engine coupled with 8-speed automatic transmission powers all versions of the Grand Wagoneer. This combination delivers 471hp and 455lb-ft of torque in this vehicle and an impressive towing capacity of a hair under ten thousand pounds (9,850lbs). They all come standard with the Quadra-Trac II 4WD, as shown by the badge on the bottom left of the rear liftgate, Quadra-lift air suspension and even a limited-slip rear differential, to name a few goodies. You can adjust the ride height on the center console with a toggle, and it raises or lowers the vehicle in seconds. The suspension will also adapt depending on which drive mode you select on the other toggle. In every case, the 6.4L engine isn't lacking power, and the Grand Wagoneer does the 0-100kph in about 6,0 seconds which is impressive for a 6,460lbs vehicle! This vehicle isn't lightweight by any stretch; you will feel the weight on tight corners. Braking is outstanding, the plunging is well-balanced by the suspension, and it doesn't feel as floaty as one would expect. Most of these vehicles will never see anything further than gravel or snowy road to a cabin, but if you want to, you can bring the Grand Wagoneer in a puddle of water and monitor the situation with the central infotainment screen; you're still buying a Jeep after all. On the pavement, it's one of the smoothest rides we've ever encountered and truly feels like a luxury vehicle whenever you start the engine.
The importance of this model for Jeep and Stellantis as an automotive group can't be overstated. The all-new Jeep Grand Wagoneer is nothing short of impressive. We could've written much more about its tech or the comfort of the driving and the interior itself; it's a must-see vehicle if you haven't seen one in the flesh yet, and if you're in the market for a behemoth, this is worth every penny.
Jeep has lent us this vehicle for one week as a press vehicle. We have no affiliation with Jeep Canada. The above reflects our personal opinion of the car referred above.